Posted in Generic Ramblings

Sterzings, A Taste of My Childhood

Sterzings are potato chips made in southeast Iowa, in the river town of Burlington. They’re shipped out all over the place, though I also couldn’t tell you how far. Heck, sometimes it’s hard to find them in other parts of Iowa.

A similar big company product would be Lay’s original, but these are much better. They have a distinct taste and just the right amount of salt. They have a crunchier crunch than Lay’s, too. Even though our store carries them fairly consistently, I don’t buy chips very often at all, and when I do it’s usually tortilla with salsa or quest.

I was driven to write about them, because I purchased some yesterday on a whim. (Never shop hungry, not even if you’re going at a weird time, on a weird day, just to avoid the Easter crowd.) Biting into one as part of this evening’s meal (paired with my grilled cheese sandwich), it brought me straight back to my grandma’s house.

Although she would occasionally buy Lay’s or Ruffles, it was almost always Sterzings. For grilling in summer or casual lunch, we’d have them with the meal. Usually it was part of an evening snack. Once opened, there were always stored in a “clear” Tupperware container, probably advertised for this use.

Now, although I dont’ eat them often at all, something about it this time took me right back. Maybe it’s because were I still a kid and living at home, it’s the kind of weekend where right after school/work, my parents would load us up and head to Cedar Rapids to spend the weekend. (They’re both from there and all my grandparents lived there until they eventually all passed away.) I mean, it is Easter weekend.

It was just such a pleasant and unexpected reaction to eating a potato chip that I had to write about it. (Although I did post date it until Saturday, just in case I didn’t get any art in, since we’ll be celebrating Easter with my parents a day early, so I won’t be home.)

Two interesting and related facts:

1 – That’s the same cookie jar my grandma had in her kitchen.

2 – When my husband and I went to Las Vegas and at at Batista’s Hole in the Wall, we were standing in line behind a couple – the man was wearing a Sterzings t-shirt. We had found one of our own! They were from Burlington (the original capital of Iowa and about a 20 minute drive from my husband’s hometown), we were seated next to each other, and became quick friends.



I'm a humble little Anglophile with obscure talents.

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